Should We Attend Church Now with Availability of Internet

In today digital or internet world, we can gain immediate access to the messages of the best preachers. We can read the scriptures with lots of aids and commentaries. We can communicate with each other through email, live chat, myspace and many others. We can even get connected wirelessly anywhere and anytime. Is there still a need to attend the Sunday Worship services, or in normal terms, attend church on Sunday?

Purpose vs Activities
To answer this question, we need to back to the basic definition of Church. What makes a Church ? What is its purpose ? What are the activities ? We need to differentiate the activities from the purpose. Purpose does not change with time and situations but activities do. How do we make use of the better technology to do church-activities and thereby fulfill the Purpose of the Church more effectively.

Definition of Church
Church is an assembly of Believers in Jesus Christ for the purpose of representing Christ on earth and therefore to the building each other up in maturity to conform to the image of Christ. Christ is the head of the Church his Body on earth Col 1:18, Eph 1:22. Church is made up of people and not things or activities. The purpose is Christ on earth - behaving and showing Christ on earth. But we don't get to maturity in Christ immediately. So we are to organized ourselves together where such caring and building-up can take place.

Church is NOT Christ & Me only
We can immediately see that Church is not made up of One-Person. It is not Christ the head and Me the body. It is Christ the Head and We the believers the Body. We cannot do church alone and we must be linked to a community of believers.

The Organisation of Church
Eph 4 gives the purpose and the 5 fold ministries in a church. Any healthy church should have the 5 roles staffed and played out. See the mind-map for the details. Rom 12 and 1 Cor 12 added additional gifts and roles. It is possible, as some people proposed, that the gifts are related to the ministry. e.g. Gifts of Exhorting, Showing Mercy are for Pastors. Miracle workers are related to Evangelist and Apostles.

The Activities
Act 2 tells us that the early Church met in Temples, Public Places, and in Homes day by day (Not just Sunday! Church is not Sunday at a location but Church is wherever and whenever we are.). They attend to the Apostles' teaching (i.e. Bible Truth), fellowship, breaking of bread, prayers, giving thanks and praising God. They were glad and generous hearted people. Consequently, they have favors with all the people and God added to their number day by day.

They met at public places to receive teachings and to share the Gospel (Act 4:4). They met at their home for fellowship ( which might include the application of teaching in every life; the corrections and learning in practice), sharing of joy and sorrows. There were centralised activties and there were home group activities.
There were people in different leadership roles (e.g. 5 fold ministries) and there were the larger group of people who lived out the truth in their market places - work of faith, labor of love and steadfastness of hope in our Lord Jesus Christ 1Th 1:3.

What About Technology
Technology is related to the activities. Technology helps us to carry out the activities with greater effectiveness and ease. We should therefore make good and better use of them. We should change our activities to make better use of techology to accomplish the purpose of the Church. Teaching and Fellowship are all aided by internet technology. Use them. It allows us to more effective. There is only caution. Easy and Wide availablility also means easy and wide access to garbage and wrong doctrines. Need to know how to filter out and choose those that are good.

Do We Attend Church?
What are the activities that enables us to accomplish reflecting Christ on earth better ? How do we grow up into maturity conforming to the image of Christ? How can we organize ourselves better so that we can have a greater impact on our society for Christ? The basic things for believers are:

a. get connected with a Group of Believers
b. where others can help you grow and be accountable
c. and where you can help others grow and be accoutable
d. and living out the Christ in us through connecting with God, studying and obeying His will for you.

If you have such a group where Christ is the head and all are members accountable to one another and living out Christ daily, then you have a Church. Attending Sunday Worship at a Church building may be or not be one of the activity that the Church has to do.

Follow the mind-map below for more details.

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